It’s NOT always sunny in Philadelphia. We found that out first hand as the day we had picked to do our summer edition of the JunkFood Meet at Talen Energy Stadium was filled with dark skies and eventually downpours. We still had a great day and we still love all of those who show support for us. Much like our Spring Edition, we had a great line-up of cool and unique food trucks, we showcased Street Art (in a big way), we had plenty of musical talent performing on stage and around the venue, we were right on the banks of a mighty river, we had some great local and regional vendor booths and lifestyle brands on deck, and of course we had some amazing cars on display and in competition. The only thing that didn’t play by our rules that day was Mother Nature – and there’s no doubt that the show would have been doubled or tripled in turn out if the weather had cooperated. But, we’ve been putting on shows for quite some time and we have always lucked out with beautiful weather, so it was bound to rain on our parade eventually.
We’ve been wanting to take The JunkFood Meet on the road for some time now. We feel that the car community loves the concept of the event, and we know it can work well outside of our hometown. So early this spring we set out to find some cool spots for possible venues. We can’t even begin to tell you how cool it was to work with Kyle and his team from The Philadelphia Union MLS soccer club. Talen Energy Stadium is such a cool picturesque venue. Located right along the Delaware River and built seamlessly into the backdrop of the massive Commodore Barry Bridge. After a great deal of planning, we decided to set up shop in the old Abandoned Sons of Ben lot. This section would allow us to present the event in a more urban style environment, complete with a bando or two for our street artists to tag live during the show. It was also a gameday, so it allowed us to be an added attraction for tailgaters and earlybirds… but kept us tucked nicely out of the way of incoming soccer match traffic. Turns out we picked quite a day to schedule our event, as it was the highest amount of ticket sales the team had ever encountered. The sold out crowd was excited to see the Union take on The LA Galaxy and their freshly signed international superstar and legend, Zlatan Imbrahimovic.
We had a couple of our favorite DJ’s in the house for this one. DJ Masterpeel set the vibes on the gravel pit + food truck side of the lot. DJ Takeover hung out on what we called the main stage, which was just an old porch that wrapped around the abandoned building that we were set up next to. This was the same building that we held our first event Battle at the Bando mural contest. At the end of the day, the VP and Graphic Designer for the Philadelphia Union came out and voted along with our car show judges to come up with an ultimate winner for the competition – resulting in 1 vote for each artist. The Union was happy to invite all three artists to collaborate on a new mural – to be painted inside the stadium and unveiled on opening day 2019. We are beyond excited to have been able to create this opportunity for three amazing artists and three great people. Rome, Bizo, Bryant – congrats again to you guys! While we had live street art happening in the background, we also welcomed Rare Royalty Magazine to put on another JunkFood Jam mini-concert, as they showcased a handful of talented artists on the stage. That was right about the time the rains started really coming down though, so unfortunately the performances were cut short and we transitioned quickly into the car show awards so people could head home and stay dry.
You know the main attraction of these events are the food though. We had a great line-up on deck – featuring some of our hometown favorites who wanted to make the trip with us and of course some of Philly’s finest. Included within the lineup was the world famous “as seen on tv” Wahlburger’s and also House of Cupcakes – who won a season of the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars tv show. We had the food vendors arched across the back of the adjacent lot with plenty of room to relax and get away from things – along with some of our bigger vendor appearances such as the Tjin Edition Roadshow rig and our long-time friend and fellow foodie, Aaron Vaccar’s Auto Life Tour. Both set-ups featured vehicles that debuted at this past year’s SEMA Show in Las Vegas. We hope to get them both involved again at a future event with better weather conditions, so the community can really get a glimpse at what goes into these painstaking vehicle builds.
As we continue to host more and more events, we have a growing group of vendors/sponsors/partners that show us support. We couldn’t do these shows without them. It’s all part of the master plan though, to create fun social gatherings that help the car community form a tight knit family style atmosphere with one another. We love the super serious, elite style car shows as much as the next guy… but the JunkFood Meet is more about having fun, meeting new people, and hanging out with old friends. So we love that our partners have formed that type of friendly relationship with us.
Shout out to Car Effex – who came correct – showcasing some vehicles they customized for a couple of Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles football players. We were sure to introduce them to our contacts with the Philadelphia Union to hopefully expand their already illustrious pro athlete clientele.
We met Emilio Soriano for the first time at the Spring Edition of the JunkFood Meet. He and his Stance Garage came out strong for Philly, with a dope line-up of vehicles. They posted up their own section of VIP placement under the roof behind their cars. Was awesome to see some new faces and some old homies in the mix hanging out like a big happy family. We hope to see more of this at some of our future events!
We’ve got a lot of similar stories from the past few years of putting on our own events, posting up at other people’s events, or curating our own section of established events like Carlisle Import Performance Nationals, OC Car Show, Tuner Evolution, etc. We meet good people and we enjoy seeing them time and time again. We like to see the progression of their builds and their determination and commitment to car culture.
We’ve been putting on shows for quite a few years now – six or seven we lost count. But throughout all of our events, we’ve only ever had one person win Best of Show multiple times. That was Kyle Wilinsky and his immaculate MK3 Golf – which is currently undergoing an extensive makeover with no time table on when it may be back on the scene.
But we’ve never had a competitor win back-to-back events. And now we can go one step further, as Jason Schmuck has achieved a Three-Peat. His J swapped and twin turbo S2000 took home Best of Show honors at Spring Breakdown, Harrisburg JunkFood Meet, and now Philly JunkFood Meet. With just our fall event to go, we have to wonder… is he going to sweep the series or is another competitor going to step up to the plate? Taking a look at the attention to detail and craftsmanship that went into this car though, the results are no surprise. We are super proud of yet another local builder/fabricator making a name for himself. He’s created his own style and you can take a look at a handful of killer Honda – and other JDM vehicles – engine bays from around our area and say “Yep, that’s a SchmuckBuilt”.
Despite the lack of sunshine – and the struggle for some of us working on this event behind the scenes to keep a positive attitude because of the weather – JunkFood Meet Summer Edition was an important stepping stone for our brand. The vision was there and everyone who did come out to brave the rains seemed to really enjoy themselves. We pride ourselves on doing things just a bit differently than the rest of the car scene… and we are always grateful to realize that people enjoy us and the things that we do.
Stay Tuned for news on our Fall Edition of The Junk Food Meet… coming soon. In the meantime, peep the full photo set from our main man Nick Becker aka @becker_junkstyles. Cheers!